German media concern Bertelsmann has closed the syndication of a five year Euros 1.5bn revolving credit facility to be used for general corporate purposes and to partially replace a Euros 2.5bn bridge loan agreed in June 2002.

The non-underwritten deal was so successful with the market that there was a 27% over-subscription with Euros 1.9bn being raised. However, Bertelsmann opted not to take the over-subscription and instead scaled back the banks in the syndicate.

According to a statement, 'the facility is a further step in Bertelsmann's finance strategy to centralise group funding and the intention to preserve a conservative financial profile. This is combined with a strong commitment to its ratings level and internal financial targets (e.g. limitation of financial debts). The single long term tranche is a further improvement of Bertelsmann's maturity profile.'

The credit facility was arranged by BNP Paribas, Citigroup and Commerzbank Securities.